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9/11 Exhibit at Smithsonian

September 11, 2002|From Associated Press

WASHINGTON — Speakers at Tuesday's opening ceremony for an exhibit on Sept. 11 at the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History included First Lady Laura Bush and her predecessor, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.), and Secretary of State Colin Powell. But the loudest applause and only standing ovation were reserved for Joseph Pfeifer, a New York City Fire Department battalion chief who helped direct rescue efforts at the World Trade Center.

Pfeifer's coat, hat and boots are on display in the exhibit hall. So is a crowbar, used to break through gypsum wallboard. It was found near the body of his brother, Kevin, a New York City Fire Department lieutenant who died in the collapse of the towers.

A day after the attacks, a group of soldiers and firefighters on the roof of the Pentagon unfurled a giant American flag. On Tuesday, they gave the flag to the museum.

Army Pfc. Jeff Layne was one of the soldiers who brought the flag onto the Pentagon roof. "We wanted to show the rest of the country that our military is still standing strong, that it's going to take more than a plane to destroy our military," Layne said.

Also on display is the bent and distorted frame of a TV monitor from the Pentagon. The set came from the work area where Brady Howell, a 26-year-old intern, was killed in the attacks. "It really brings back the emotions that I felt on Sept. 11," said his brother, Regan, of Centerville, Utah. "There was the loss, the recognition that there are evil people in the world and they need to be stopped. I don't want America to ever forget those things."

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